Jan 7, 2019, BBC: Families waiting too long for special needs support in England https://www.bbc.com/news/education-46658243 Thousands of children in England with special educational needs are waiting too long for an education, health and care plan (EHC), the BBC has learned. … Longest individual waits for a finalised EHC plan: Suffolk: 1,023 days Tower Hamlets: 1,014 days Isle of Wight: 1,005 days West Sussex: 973 days Liverpool: 945 days Dorset: 924 days Haringey: 915 days Havering: 898 days Southend-on-Sea: 871 days Worcestershire: 870 days The longest wait for an individual application was in Suffolk - where it took the council 1,023 days, or nearly three years, to finalise one EHCP application. Suffolk County Council said an increased demand for EHCPs had proved particularly challenging - happening at the same time as the transfer from the old system of Statements of Special Educational Needs Councillor Gordon Jones, the council's cabinet member for education and skills, said: "Our priority is to ensure every child gets the correct help and support they need to prosper and develop. "The increase in demand for education, health and care needs assessments for children and young people in Suffolk is a matter that I am taking very seriously…. The number of requests for EHC plans has soared in recent years. Sixty-one councils provided data on how many applications they had been receiving. Between them, they were sent 16,696 requests for a needs assessment in 2014-15, but 28,507 in 2017-18 - a 70% increase. West Sussex County Council told the BBC it had seen a 44% increase in the number of EHC plans it holds over the last four years. … The number of parents taking councils to tribunal to challenge them at various stages of the EHCP process nearly doubled over the four years - up from 1,041 in 2014/15, compared with 1,988 in 2017/18. …
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Children today are noticeably different from previous generations, and the proof is in the news coverage we see every day. This site shows you what’s happening in schools around the world. Children are increasingly disabled and chronically ill, and the education system has to accommodate them. Things we've long associated with autism, like sensory issues, repetitive behaviors, anxiety and lack of social skills, are now problems affecting mainstream students. Blame is predictably placed on bad parenting (otherwise known as trauma from home).
Addressing mental health needs is as important as academics for modern educators. This is an unrecognized disaster. The stories here are about children who can’t learn or behave like children have always been expected to. What childhood has become is a chilling portent for the future of mankind.
Anne Dachel, Media editor, Age of Autism
(John Dachel, Tech. assist.)
What will happen in another 4 years? How can we go on like this? This is a national (and international) problem of monumental proportions. We have an entire new class of children who cannot be accommodated by the system: many are manifestly neurologically impaired. Meanwhile, the government and the medical profession sleep on regardless.
UK media editor, Age of Autism
The generation of American children born after 1990 are arguably the sickest generation in the history of our country.
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.
It seemed to me that with rising autism prevalence, you’d also see rising autism costs to society, and it turns out, the costs are catastrophic.
They calculated that in 2015 autism cost the United States $268 billion and they projected that if autism continues at its current rate, we’re looking at one trillion dollars a year in autism costs by 2025, so within five years.
Toby Rogers, PhD, Political economist
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